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Need to Know: How likely is a Redskins turnaround?

Oct 20, 2013, 6:37 AM EST

RG3-at-line-vs-Oak

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, October 20, the day the Washington Redskins play the Chicago Bears at FedEx Field.

How likely is a turnaround?

When the Redskins fell to three games under .500 last year, it appeared that they were on their way down and out. After going 3-3 in their first six games, the Redskins lost three in a row. They actually looked good in losing to the Giants with Robert Griffin III putting on a show including a TD pass to Santana Moss that put the Redskins ahead in the late going. But an Eli Manning bomb to Victor Cruz in the final two minutes gave the Giants the win.

Things went downhill from there. Their 27-17 loss to the Steelers was their worst game of the season to that point. They topped it or, rather, bottomed it the next week in a 24-21 home loss to the 1-6 Panthers in a game that was not as close as the final score indicated. That dropped the Redskins to 3-6 and prompted Mike Shanahan to talk about players performing to show they want to be with the team in the future. The slump made the team’s seven-game winning streak to take the division title seem all the more unlikely.

How likely does a turnaround for the 2013 Redskins seem right now? In some ways it seems like they have a steeper hill to climb. Last year after nine games the Redskins at least knew that they could hang their hat on Alfred Morris pounding out some rushing yards and Griffin being able to work some magic. This year both Morris and Griffin have had their moments but consistency has eluded them.

But if you look at the last three games, it does look like this team is closer to putting it together when compared to the 2012 bunch. They had their chances against the Lions, posted an “a-win-is-a-win” win over the Matt Flynn-led Raiders and if they could have tackled Dwayne Harris they would have been right with the Cowboys until the end.

With a trip to Denver looming a week from today, starting a winning streak against the Bears is unlikely. But other than the meeting with Peyton Manning and company it seems like Washington can be competitive in its remaining games. That is, of course, if the defense continues its improvement, the special teams don’t make killer mistakes, and the offense can score some first-half touchdowns.

Those are some big ifs but not really any bigger than the team faced last year. That doesn’t mean a playoff run is imminent but it does mean that there is a chance.

In case you missed it

Sun 10.13

Mon 10.14

Tue 10.15

Wed 10.16

Thur 10.17

Fri 10.18

Sat 10.19

  1. rahwayhomey - Oct 20, 2013 at 8:06 AM

    Good article Rich. I think another point was OL last yr took time to come together. Last week A Morris got the long one, he’s still averaging 5.2 yds/carry & if our D could ever stop someone, his yds would go up & we have been in every game. This year’s record is clearly on the D that had given up record yardage the 1st 3 games. & Special Teams have been horrible. Being down each game, the opposing D’s have been able to tee off on RGIII & play action doesn’t work. Can we plz get a lead out of the gate, & we’ll flourish. RGIII would now just be out of preseason, and only 10 months after major surgery, his elusiveness is coming back, outrunning healthy, non operated NFL athletes to the sideline. If A Robinson doesn’t drop that gimme deep one, it’s a different record & RGIII has almost a 90 passing rating for the year, which is in the top 1/2 of qb’s this yr. (shockingly good based on medical recovery & always losing early on the scorecard in games). I think the odds of comeback this year rely on the D stepping up, ie Orakpo, Kerrigan, Fletch, D Hall & Amerson. RGIII has developed more pocket presence due to more conservative approach & this will benefit him in long run as it’s just 1 more weapon in his array of skills. Home victory is a must & I smell victory if D can rise up!

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